Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Meditation in a Toolshed

Meditation in a Toolshed is a short excerpt about the difference between looking at something and looking along something. Lewis raises the point that "you get one experience of a thing when you look along it and another when you look at it." and "The people who look at things have had it all their own way; the people who look along things have simply been brow-beaten. I think brow-beaten is an interesting term that is not often used in discussion but definitely paints a vivid picture.

From studying this text I realized that I have never made a clear distinction between looking at things and looking along things in my life. It seems like most people look along things because it is easier than looking at things. But the good news is that we learn from our experiences if we stop being so critical and doubtful towards life and simply live.

A lot of good points were brought up during class discussion. It was noted that looking at something involves a logical thought process and looking along something involves more emotional thought.

Parts of this excerpt were confusing in the way that Lewis seems to attack his point from every angle causing contradiction. However, it is important to look at a situation from all angles to be able to better understand it. Take love for example. One must experience love by being in love, seeing love and feeling the effects of broken love to be able to understand the emotion. This way of looking at things and gaining a deeper understanding of perspective also plays a role in religion. It is not enough to simply go to church. One must be immersed in the church, and in the word of God in daily life with prayer to fully understand it. Also, it is important to be aware of other peoples' views and perspectives. Not everyone thinks from the same point of view and this can cause conflict.

Science and truth play into the experience of learning. However emotions contribute to the difference between experiencing and observing. Truth comes from Christ and wisdom and humility are found in Christ. This wisdom and humility are necessary to understand the difference between at and along.

Final thought: The sun has risen not because I see it but because I can see everything else.

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